Historical Timeline Highlights…
2018- Installed and dedicated rainbow flag as visible welcome to LGBTQI+ people
2017- Hosted community screening of After the Flood and discussed sustainable climate practices
2016- Hosted the Native Peoples Bearing Witness Retreat. Over 100 participants bore witness to the historical trauma/genocide suffered and the resilience displayed by Native People in Minnesota.
2016- Became community partners with West Siders for Strong Schools, a citizen’s advocacy group for public schools in the church’s neighborhood.
2016- Hosted workshops entitled Unbending Gender to increase transgender awareness and advocacy.
2016- Hosted discussion on Climate-endangered birds in Minnesota
2014 – Hosted Doctrine of Discovery two part workshop
2014 – Hosted forum on Racism in Public Art with Native American leader Jim Bear Jacobs
2013 – Held Two Truth Telling Forums with Dakota leaders
2013 – Supported and celebrated the Marriage Equality Bill making same sex marriage legal in Minnesota. With the passage of the law, the congregation and its pastor now offer both civil and religious ceremonies for all those who are married at Cherokee Park United Church.
2013 – Began including projected images of Jesus from many cultures and ethnic groups in worship.
2013- Began congregation wide discussion on the white stained glass Jesus.
2012 – Boycott Blues in worship- Congregation members created a puppet production of the children’s book Boycott Blues celebrating Rosa Parks and the Montgomery bus boycott.
2012 – Began a supportive relationship with the Mendota Mdewakanton Dakota Community, including hosting the closing feast for the annual wacipi (pow wow).
2012- Installed large solar panel array.
2012 – Began monthly participation with immigration justice vigils at Ramsey County Jail.
2012 – Partners with Communidades Construyendo Esperanza (Communities Building Hope or CCE). With CCE, the congregation worked on immigration justice and developed a supportive relationship with villages in Ostuma, El Salvador. The congregation strives to host an annual bilingual worship service in memory of Monsignor Romero.
2012 – The congregation actively worked to defeat a constitutional amendment prohibiting LGBT marriages.
2011- Congregation passes a marriage equality policy, voting affirmatively that marriage is a covenant made in the presence of God between two people, regardless of their gender or sexual orientation. The policy stated that “the Covenanted Community of Cherokee Park United Church believes the current civil marriage policies are discriminatory to members of our community and that, at least until those policies are corrected, Cherokee Park United Church will no longer perform civil marriages as an agent of the State of Minnesota”. The congregation continued to perform religious ceremonies without regard to sexual orientation.
2010- Partnered with Habitat for Humanity, volunteering annually to build affordable houses for neighbors.
2009 – Became a co-sponsor of and fiscal agent for a collaboration called FREC (Facilitating Racial Equity Collaborative). FREC now sponsors an annual Overcoming Racism conference that attracts close to 500 people for a two day conference at Metropolitan State University.
2008 – Held first community art exhibit with specific outreach to communities of color.
2008- CPUC sponsors an Antiracism Workshop that grows to become an annual event, called the Overcoming Racism Conference.
2007 – Cherokee Park United partners with and became fiscal agent for the Antiracism Study Dialogue Circles (ASDIC).
2007 – the Council of Cherokee Park United Church created an Antiracism Team. The Antiracism Team provides leadership for Cherokee Park United Church in the transformational work of becoming an antiracist, multicultural community of faith.
2006 – 2010 – Summer Peace Camps were held in collaboration with All Around the Neighborhood serving approximately 90 children during a three week period of time.
1998 – World Music Ministry is begun with grants of support from House of Hope Presbyterian Church (USA) and Westminster Presbyterian Church (USA).
1996 and 1997 LGBT Commitment – In 1996 and 1997, Cherokee Park United Church engaged in a yearlong study of issues related to sexual orientation. In the fall of 1997 the congregation adopted a statement of “Affirmation and Inclusion”. It promised full access and welcome of LGBTQ people in the congregational life of Cherokee Park United.
1993 to 2009 – A week long Summer Reading Camp for children at Torre de San Miguel is planned and staffed by members of Cherokee Park United Church as an extension of the Building Blocks Tutorial program.
1992 – Martin Luther King Jr. holiday worship is held for the first time with Grace Community UCC, a tradition that continues to this day.
1990 – The Outreach Ministry led Cherokee Park United Church’s participation in the first Cinco de Mayo parade, which continues to this day.
1989 – Sin Fronteras (Without Borders) emerges as an outgrowth of the Legalization Fund. Sin Fronteras was a support and advocacy ministry for documented and undocumented immigrants fleeing civil wars in Central America.
1988 – Cherokee Park United Church Council establishes a Legalization Fund to support people applying for residency following the 1986 Immigration and Reform Act. The fund began with grants from the Presbyterian Church (USA) and the United Church of Christ, totaling $16,000 serving 68 people in its first year of operation.
1988 -Began Building Blocks Tutorial, a free, volunteer-based, after school tutoring program for children attending public elementary schools on the West Side of St. Paul began. It served more than six hundred students over twenty-seven school years.